Re: Borders
Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:23

Hi Joe,

My concern was with the northern border of Moab because the J source assumes it was along the Arnon.

I no longer agree with the conventional identification of the Arnon river as the Wadi Mujib. After a careful re-reading Josephus it is clear to me that his description simply does not agree with the Wadi Mujib of the much later Christian tradition which I consider to be garbage.

A small section of the Yardan river divides the Dead Sea into two halves, northern and southern. The Arnon river runs out of "Arabia" and winds itself into the southern half of the Dead Sea not the northern half. The ancient Yabak (Jabbok) river ran into the same section of the Yardan dividing the Dead Sea into two parts. Josephus is clear that the these rivers formed the bounds of Moabite territory that the Amorites took from Moab and that it was surrounded on all sides by these bodies of water and "naturally resembled an island" (Josephus, Antiquities, 4.5.2).

Google Earth and satellite imagery makes it easy to point these rivers out. The Yabak river cannot be the Zarqa river which is another Christian mis-identification. The land between the Zarqa and the Wadi Mujib does not in any way, shape, or form resemble an island, and I'm tired of the usual attempts to brush Josephus aside in order to defend traditional Christian BS. The Madaba Map is worthless nonsense in my opinion.

This map shows the correct boundary of northern Moab that was taken away from the Moabites by the Amorites. The Yabak and Arnon rivers have roughly the same point of origin in the east, and this is the Zarad (Zered) brook of Deuteronomy 2:13-14. When the children of Yaohsharal crossed the Zarad they hugged the Arnon and followed it west to the King's Highway which is the modern route 45. When the king of the Amorites refused to let the children of Yaohsharal use the King's Highway then the Amorites were defeated and the children of Yaosharal took this island away from the Amorites. They also drove out the Amorites in the lands north of the Yabak. But they left the land of south of the Arnon to the Moabites.

All the later sources (except D) take it that northern Moab (north of the Arnon) was an integral part of Moab. This is so in the writings of the prophets - Isaiah 15, Jeremiah 25 and Ezekiel 25. It is also the case with the P sources in the Pentateuch which consistently report that the plains of Moab were on the other side of the Jordan (opposite) Jericho.

All of these sources speak of Moab south of the Arnon. The problem is the worthless Christian tradition recycled by Eusebius and the worthless Christian Madaba Map of the 6th century CE. The plains of Moab on the other side of the Yardan opposite Yarakho cannot be anything other than the Al Lisān peninsula. Moriah Plaza Dead Sea hotel occupies the site of ancient Yarakho (31.2744° north; 35.4144° east; -397 meters). Yes, I know what the reaction to this will be, but it is the only fit with Josephus' detailed description of Yarakho and Yaroshalam (Jerusalem). For he says both were near Masada. Modern Jerusalem is therefore the Yaroshalam of the Amorites in the north (Ezekiel 16) and not the Yaroshalam of the Yabosay in the south which is Tel Arad.

But even J makes a slip as when he says that while at Shittim (before the crossing of the Jordan), Israelites men were fornicating with Moabite (not Amorite) women before Baal-Peor.

Shataym (Shittim) is the Ghawr al Mazra‘ah. The daughters of Moab could easily have reached it from their place south of the Arnon by following the path along the western shore of the Dead Sea that is now called route 65. The actual and real distance is very short, but if we follow the view that the Arnon and Yabak are Wadi Mujib and Zarqa, respectively, only then do absurdities appear. Josephus and his clear description of an island is to be preferred.

Also the D source (which follow J in placing Northern Moab under Amorite control, but written some two centuries later) say that Moses (before the crossing of the Jordan) declared the torah in the land of Moab and and was buried in front of Beth-Peor, in the land of Moab.

The Amorites did not possess the "island" long enough for the place-names to be changed and neither did Yaohsharal by the time the prophet Masha died. But the cities ruled by Mesha of Moab centuries later were neither within the island, nor to the north of it. The Anglican missionary Klein says he found the Mesha inscription at the site of ancient Dibon in August 1868. Problem is he was calling that place Dibon on the basis of Eusebius’ Onomasticon and the Christian Madaba Map, both of which are crap since they are contradicted by Josephus.

Regards Tory

  • Re: BordersJoe Baker, Mon Sep 25 07:34
    Hi Tory Can someone please define the borders of Edom, Moab, and Ammon please. Depends on what time period you are talking about. Boundaries are fluid because they depend on everyone recognising... more
    • Re: Borders — Tory, Fri Sep 29 10:23
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